Dear All

The beauty of the autumn season is creeping into the chilly mornings and hinting in the colour of the leaves.

This year I shall be watching the wild world weave its magic away from the BBC and live television.

I will not be co-presenting Autumnwatch.

My decision to step away from the series has been a very difficult one, and is based on personal reasons.

I have been hugely lucky to work with such a wonderful production team, and explored the wilds of Britain with Autumnwatch and Springwatch over the years. I sincerely hope I shall again.

But I am not disappearing!

I have been putting all my energy into a new web-based project, the Wildlife Whisperer, which will be going live this autumn. Indeed, as I write, I am sitting in a house on the Shetland coast, preparing to head out at dawn to make a film showing how to track, find, observe and photograph wild otters. I will also, of course, be filming the shear charm and beauty of these exquisite creatures. These are just a few of many new films, competitions, maps, special offers and educational facilities that will, I hope, make the Wildlife Whisperer an exciting resource and entertaining website for anyone with an interest in the wild world about them. We will be giving as much attention to the wildlife on your doorstep, whether it’s garden birds or pond creatures, as we will the more elusive creatures. And we will be sharing the fun with/through our sister websites, TalkWildlife and Simon King Wildlife.

We will also be launching a new site very soon, just for fun, called Where is Simon King! Check it out and see if you can find the mini-me!

Autumn is coming, and I am as lucky, and busy, as ever, watching the marvels of nature. I look forward to continuing to share it all with you.

Peace and Light


Tags: Autumnwatch, SimonKing, Springwatch, WildlifeWhisperer

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I must say I am sad... glad that you wont be gone from Autumnwatch etc forever :-)

I must also say I am excited by these new projects that you've just outlined and look forward to them unfolding and I look forward to contributing/taking part.

Good luck and see you around.


Wildlife Filmer Adam ;-)
As Simons business partner I'll be keeping you up to speed with all the exciting developments from Wildlife Whisperer. We'll be sharing more details about what we have in store very soon.

Watch this space!
Rather shocked to hear this Simon as you have been an integral part of Spring\Autumnwatch - your contributions will be missed & I hope you won't stay away too long. I'm looking forward to your new ventures though - the very best of luck!
Heard the news from Chris P at the Birdfair originally, and I have to say that he annoyed and upset me profoundly. Saying it out loud, during a light-hearted panel game (Just a Linnet). As someone with emotional/behavioural problems stemming from Dyspraxia and Asperger's Syndrome, I couldn't laugh during the whole of the rest of the game. Springwatch and Autumnwatch are my two televisual highlights of the natural history broadcasting calendar. I have not missed a show of either programme since Week 2 of Springwatch 2006.

Springwatch is the reason why I am in the RSPB, the World Owl Trust, the BTO, the Lincolnshire Bird Club and the Neotropical Bird Club. Springwatch is the reason my bird feeders regularly attract flocks of up to 25, even 30 House Sparrows at a time in my back garden. Springwatch is the reason why me and my bins are never parted. Springwatch is the reason I have a Life List of 193 species. Springwatch and Simon is the reason why I am sitting here typing this message. Springwatch helped me drag my spirits out of the hellhole of clinical depression in 2006. It was Simon that made me smile for the first time in a month. During the time I couldn't remember his name, I gave him another. Mr Happy. He is a very special man to me and he has my ardent, unwavering, permanent support and admiration.

Upon hearing Chris say what he did, my confused mind went into panic-stricken shock (people with my two conditions are far less able to keep our emotions under control) and even cried with distress in front of Simon when he provided the total confirmation. People with Asperger's cannot cope well with change, especially if it is articulated in such a blunt, casual manner 'a la Packham'. I don't mind Simon moving on to do new projects, but I certainly DO mind the way I was told about it.

There should have been a total Birdfair embargo on the news (with Chris told in no uncertain terms to button his lip) until Simon was ready to tell us himself in his normal tactful, sensitive way. Whether or not I can pluck up the courage to face the new presenter lineup, I simply don't know. That said, Simon remains my guiding light in the natural history world and I look forward to throwing myself into this place and Wildlife Whisperer with gusto. I already have a good reference from him. He once said of me:

"You are a vibrant, fun girl, full of good ideas and I love your effusive enthusiasm"

Ooh dear.. swoon coming on... falling to floor... now. ** THUD **
hi Simon. A real shame to hear this news and to be honest a shock. It must have been hard decision to have made, but i'm sure your reasons are very big. Good on you! This sounds like a wonderful and very interesting move and certainly a unique web based project which sounds like it will really work. I for one would love to get involved and follow / use the site! Good luck with you're morning mission my favourite guys to capture on camera. Will
Hi Simon, I did hear you at the Bird Fair saying you would not be working on Autumnwatch this year and although I believe you to be an integral part of the program having spoken with Jerry I think I can see that you will have a lot on over the coming months with the new project. As I said when speaking with you briefly at your Bird Fair book signing you are an inspiration to us and I think the new project will continue to inspire us all to go out and photograph/film wildlife hopefully more successfully.

Good luck.
Sorry to hear your leaving Springwatch and Autumnwatch. I'll miss your knowledge, experiences and insight of wildlife, along with your enthusiasm and your sense of humour. Wishing you the very best of luck in your new projects. Must say I'm looking forward to WildlifeWhisperer.
Hi Simon, shame that you won't be on Autumnwatch this year. Just over a year ago I put one birdfeeder out to attract birds to my postage stamp of a garden, I now have several and sat and watched the goings on with the different species over the spring and summer, it has been fascinating.
Last winter we were making our own fat balls and I have taken a deeper interest in the wildllfe around us and that is thanks to you and the Spring/Autumnwatch teams.
Living in Dorset this years Springwatch was an eyeopener to the local Dorset wildlife thanks to yourself.
I am looking forward to the Wildlife Whisperer and hope you return to the Spring/Autumnwatch shows in the future.

Good luck on your current/future projects :)
I'm sorry to hear that you're not going to be on Autumnwatch this year, you shall be missed. But your new project sounds interesting and I'm looking forward to it. I wish you the best of luck.
Hi Simon,

We'll all miss you on Autumnwatch, and I do mean all of us, as even the cat knows your voice and pays attention when you talk (he knows that animals bouncing about are about to follow!), specially the deer rut comments - better than ANY soaps and reality shows combined - and the very accurate and fun animal impressions! Good luck with the new enterprises which I will of course do my best to join and contribute. Enjoy the otters, I'm sure you're having as fab time!
Hi Simon. You will be greatly missed on Autumn Watch, but I am looking forward to seeing Wildlife Whisperer and being part of it , and following your great filming in the future. It was a pleasure to meet you at the Rutland Birdfair and hope to again one day. Many thanks for all you do. enjoy the otters. John
The BBCs loss is our gain. Look forward to all that is to come. Enjoy Shetland.

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